It’s time to make plans for 2021. And with all the change that has, and continues to occur, that effort is no small feat! More than ever, talent acquisition and retention are essential to our organizations. So, regardless of your contingent worker’s classification - independent contractor, freelancer, intern, gig, and otherwise temporary employee - the individuals you hire today are the high-potential candidates your future workforce demands.
Between the rapid onset of the digital transformation and increased adoption of remote work, our people programs are evolving. Opportunity is on the rise! So is the emphasis on learning. Perhaps not surprisingly, internship programs are in high demand as a result. Additionally, evolving directives like risk aversion, corporate social commitments, and organizational restructuring are adding to contingent headcounts across the board.
With resources for project and interim solutions typically falling outside of traditional HR budgets, communicating the full value of all of our people can be challenging to say the least. But assuring an inclusive brand experience for all staff means understanding the value of your contingent workers. A fully informed recruitment strategy recognizes high-caliber talent – both temporary and full-time. Creating a positive onboarding experience that continues to attract, engage, and retain early talent, as well as other contingent labor, requires precision and care.
1. Build trust with an organized onboarding plan.
A positive onboarding experience begins with trust. You must invest in your contingent worker relationships. It is critical to balance the urgent nature of onboarding processes with compassion, attention, and care. Keeping everything organized isn’t easy, but the minutiae can weigh heavily on a candidate’s experience. We have all operated on a "time is of the essence" mentality, but as you respond to the demands of robust onboarding, an indirect, yet crucial component is the employee experience. If the experience becomes secondary to the administrative demands of onboarding, it takes a toll on the bigger picture ─ productivity, talent retention, and the business’s bottom-line.
Learning and training can be overwhelming enough on their own. Absorbing new information while acclimating to a new work environment and getting to know the people and structure within it is a lot to ask of a new employee, especially in remote operations. Build an onboarding plan that makes space for human connection and ensures your contingent workers feel valued.
2. Establish processes to assure compensation and compliance accuracy.
Managers must ensure I-9 forms are filled in accurately and subsequently verify employment eligibility. If procedures and forms are misunderstood or completed incorrectly, your new hire won't be paid on-time or correctly, or worse, they may not be compliant. As contingent labor demand continues to climb, organizing your contingent workforce’s payroll program is vital to the success of your business.
Comprehensively managing the experience of temporary employees can feel overwhelming. Evaluating procedures to streamline processes, reducing physical paperwork, and implementing time-management software can help. If you don't have an established process for recording time, auditing, and sending paychecks, consider partnering with a third party to assure fast, accurate compensation and compliance.
3. Manage compliance with technology.
Human Resources and Procurement Executives who are acquainted with traditional full-time employees may not be familiar with what is needed to fully manage the evolving complexities of a contingent workforce. With payrolling often comes independent contractor compliance, and managing your contingent worker without knowing the ins-and-outs of labor laws is risky. Employers are subject to fines and IRS penalties for not following government established guidelines. So, while having a robust contingent workforce can reduce costs for your company, it’s vital to ensure they are being managed efficiently and compliantly.
It may feel overwhelming. Leveraging technology can certainly help. Today, we are all learning and growing with the evolution of work. So, the timing is right for adapting and exploring new tools.
True hiring success relies on comprehensive, strategic planning. To safeguard a positive employer brand experience, consider strategically partnering with an expert. A holistic approach that attracts, engages, and retains temporary talent is essential to long-term talent success. The full potential of tomorrow’s workforce can’t be realized without the value of today’s contingent worker.
About the Author
Cara Zibbell is a Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) and the Executive Director of Human Resources and Compliance at Atrium Staffing and Workforce Solutions. With a passion for Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging, her 23-year career journey is dedicated to developing people and their potential.
By Cara Zibbell